How To Edit Home Videos: Video Editing Software

Learn to Become Your Own Video Editor

If you are a first time movie or home video editor, you already have most of the tools to get started and probably don't even know it. Fortunately, video editing has become a lot easier and is now orientated towards everyone, so that even the non-computer savvy can learn to edit a mean video.

Here's how to edit home videos.

  1. First, you will need to pick up a video editing software program. Fortunately, you probably have one loaded on your computer and don't even know it. Windows XP comes with windows video maker program that should be already installed on your system. The program makes WMV files, which should play directly on your computer, or gives you a few other file options. Not to mention, this program is packed with features that should satisfy your video editing needs!.
  2. Once you've opened the program, you will need to import your video. Simply hook up your digital camera, locate the video, and voila, the program does the rest for you. It even separates the video into small chunks, based on changes to the video. It is one smart program! You can import other video files, music, or photos all to use in your video. Import everything you will use, and move onto the next step.
  3. Girl using her video cameraNow that you have everything imported, your next step is creating your timeline. Simply drag and drop clips. The program will let you preview every clip to see what is on it. Once you add them to your timeline, this is like adding them to your movie. You can stretch and drag the individual chunks, and this will manage which portions you want to appear on your video. Construct your entire video this way, and you are ready to create some video editing magic.
  4. You will notice two other portions to your video timeline. The first of which is music. If you imported a couple of songs, you can drag and drop them, and this will cause music to play along with your video, which is definitely a nice touch to any movie. The other bar allows you to drop words or pictures on the screen. Click on the side menu which says add credits, and explore all the available options. You can make crazy words do whatever you want to describe the action, or simply point out something interesting. And feel free to create credits at the end of your video.
  5. Finally, your video is in desperate need of a little flare. By right-clicking on any of your video chunks, you can manage special effects between scenes. Fade in and out, flutter the pages, or you can do some interesting things to a scene like making it appear in black and white, or making it look like an old movie camera. Experiment with all the special effects until you create something you love.
  6. When you are done creating your masterpiece, you can preview the whole thing by pressing play. When you are satisfied, you have to save your movie by going to the File -> Save Movie bar. You should see plenty of different options, like saving your movie to play on your computer, or saving it so that you can burn it onto a DVD. Choose which option you'd like, and watch as your movie is created on your computer.

Now you are done! Time to share your movie and your video editing tips with the rest of the world, and see what the critics have to say about it!


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The program is Windows MovieMaker and it's included with XP (not sure about Vista). An important point to make is that WMM won't harm your source video. The timeline allows scene deletions and additions but erases nothing from the source. So, it's a great place to experiment and the program has ample effects and title capability to make you look good with practice. After you've grown bored, move on to a more professional product.

By Murry Shohat